Smart Analytics | Blog | Open Data as the Foundation of an Open Government

May 7, 2020

Open Data as the Foundation of an Open Government

Here we will talk about open data and the advantages they give to government. We will also show a few examples of data dissemination portals.

What Is Open Data?

Open data are different in the way that any interested user may easily get free access to these data, freely use them and share them with others.

Open government data stands for a policy whose aim is to make government institutions’ activities and accountability more transparent to the population. Governments around the world are making attempts to render their data available, which will be favorable for positive social and economic reformation. This tendency can be observed not only in countries with developed economy. An increasing number of developing countries in Asia, Africa and Latin America adopt open data policies and publish data which used to be intended for internal use only. By placing their data in the public domain governments increase trust of citizens and contribute to businesses and education. Publishing open government data is a global trend of providing all interested users with access to these data to facilitate decision-making in various industries.

There are several examples below of open data portals in different fields – economy, demography, education and others. Developed by specialists at Smart Analytics, they enable any user to browse, analyse, download and share any information of interest.

Open Data Principles

Government data are considered open when in compliance with the following eight principles:

  1. Primary. Data is collected only from the original source with the highest degree of detail rather than aggregated or changed
  2. Complete. All public data are made available. All government data except restricted data as specified by law are to be open
  3. Timely. Data are published as frequently as it is necessary to maintain their relevance and value
  4. Accessible. Data must be available to a big number of users for a wide range of tasks
  5. Machine processable. Data provided must be electronically structured for further automated processing
  6. No access discrimination. Data must be available to all users, registered or unregistered, with the option of anonymous access to data
  7. No proprietary (property of authors or copyright holders) formats. Data are available in a format not exclusively controlled by a single subject
  8. License-free. Data must be free from copyright, trademarks or patents

The underlying idea for these principles amounts to public data being in the public domain and for being shared and used by any individual.

Open Data Advantages for Government

Open data form an important element of open government and have a favorable impact on government control performance.

Budget and policy expenditures are made transparent by means of publishing open government data. This, in its turn, builds the trust of the people and promotes democratic control.

In addition, access to information and knowledge has an impact on the economy. With data provided for free, companies and private individuals tend to use them more to define added value of commodities and services. This influences the private sector’s turnover and the government revenues in the form of tax and stimulates the economy.

Open data portals are also used to monitor the UN’s sustainable development goals (SDG). These web portals contain information about progress in attaining goals, allow identifying goals and tasks of higher complexity, demonstrate the percentage of indicators with the positive dynamics and allow carrying out comparative analysis of different countries’ performance in reaching SDG.

The Data Portal allows combining tables, charts, graphs and texts. A tool like this for an attractive and user-friendly dissemination of data never existed before at ESCWA.

Statistics Division


Open data portals developed by Smart Analytics enable users to promptly generate electronic publications and reports in the form of presentations with texts, charts, and maps by using an in-built CMS and disseminate data among users worldwide.

A wide range of features are available to the user which allow the following:

  • Analysing data by end-to-end search and information extraction from datasets, time series, reports, and publications
  • Using powerful data visualization tools in the form of tables, graphs, charts, and maps with the option of creating own dashboards in the system
  • Exporting data through an open API in various formats (XLS, XLSX, PDF, RTF, HTML, MHT, PPTX, JPG, PNG) for further data analysis and application

Mirror copies of applications provide continuous operation so that hundreds of thousands of users could access the portal at any time from any device – a PC, a mobile phone or a tablet.

Take a look at how Smart Analytics’ cooperation with international organizations facilitated using open data as the basis of real actions in the success stories section.


  • Open Data
  • Statistical Data
  • Data Management
  • Data Visualization

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